What is Smog?
Smog is basically derived from the merging of two words; smoke and fog. Smog is also used to describe the type of fog which has smoke or soot in it.
Smog is a yellowish or blackish fog formed mainly by a mixture of pollutants in the atmosphere which consists of fine particles and ground-level ozone.
Smog which occurs mainly because of air pollution can also be defined as a mixture of various gases with dust and water vapor. Smog also refers to hazy air that makes breathing difficult.
How is Smog Formed?
The atmospheric pollutants or gases that form smog are released in the air when fuels are burnt. When sunlight and its heat react with these gases and fine particles in the atmosphere, smog is formed.
It is purely caused by air pollution. Ground level ozone and fine particles are released in the air due to complex photochemical reactions between volatile organic compounds (VOC), sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOx).
These VOC, SO2, and NOx are called precursors. The main sources of these precursors are pollutants released directly into the air by gasoline and diesel-run vehicles, industrial plants and activities, and heating due to human activities.
Smog is often caused by heavy traffic, high temperatures, sunshine, and calm winds. These are a few of the factors behind an increasing level of air pollution in the
During the winter months when the wind speeds are low, it helps the smoke and fog to become stagnate at a place forming smog and increasing pollution levels near the
ground closer to where people are respiring. It hampers visibility and disturbs the environment.
Temperature inversions are situations when warm air does not rise instead stays near the ground. During situations of
temperature inversions, if the wind is calm, smog may get trapped and remain over a place for days.